Resolved: Homosexuals are 'born that way'
== Definitions ==
Homosexuality: In this debate, we will be specifically be focusing on orientation. Same-sex behavior is different as it is often distinguishable from orientation. Thus, homosexuality will be defined as "an enduring pattern of romantic or sexual attraction (or a combination of these) to persons of . . . the same sex or gender." -- http://en.wikipedia.org...
'Born that way': The theory argues homosexuality is inborn. Homosexuals are born that way, and their orientation is immutable. Genetics, epigenetics, or antibodies in the womb cause homosexuality and cannot change through therapy or different environments.
--> I will be arguing homosexuality is caused by multiple things. Genes have *some* effect, but the effect is moderate to weak (less than 50%). Environmental factors are the main reason homosexual tendencies develop. I am NOT arguing it is an (intentional) choice. No one chooses these factors: they just happen. I will also argue change is possible, and therefore mutable.
== Structure ==
R1: Pro accepts and presents case
R2: Con presents case, Pro rebuts
R3: Rebuttals/defense for both
R4: Rebuttals/defense for Con, Pro writes "no round as agreed".
I have made this impossible to accept. Accepting without permission = forfeit. No trolling, semantics, stuff like that. gl
Hi, I will be arguing that homosexuals are "born that way"
When my opponent says that homosexuals are not "born that way", he is implying that such a sexual orientation is artificial in one way or another. He says that "Environmental factors are the main reason homosexual tendencies develop". Now if this were true, we would see a certain demographic of homosexual people. For example, if exposure to, say, pine trees gives people a higher chance of being gay, then we would see people who live near pine trees or are otherwise regularly exposed to pine trees would be statistically "more gay" than people who aren't very much involved with pine trees. My point is, all gay people would have something in common environmentally, be it where they live or how they were raised, etc. However, we don't see that. There are homosexuals from an enormous range of demographics, such as from poor gays to rich gays to Chinese gays to American gays to famous gays to celebrity gays to atheist gays and to religious gays. If homosexuality was not inborn but was affected by environmental factors, there wouldn't be homosexuals with such a diverse array of backgrounds.
All homosexuals do have something in common with each other, however, and that is their chromosomes. Scientists tested 400 gay men and found that homosexuality can be associated with at least two chromosomes, which affect a man's sexual orientation. In 1993 Dean Hamer studied the family history of 100 gay men and found that homosexuality tended to be inherited. More than 10% of brothers of gay men were also gay (compared to 3% of the population), and uncles and male cousins on the mother's side also had a higher chance of being gay. Hamer, upon analyzing the X-chromosome, found that 33 out of 40 gay brothers had similar marks on a certain region on the chromosome.
That is not to say that homosexuality is entirely genetics, it also involves other factors such as the amount of hormones the baby was exposed to in the womb.
If homosexuality was affected by environmental factors, lesbians would be the same in every way biologically to straight women, and gay men would also be in every way biologically the same as straight men. However, this is not the case. Testosterone is commonly associated to spatial reasoning. When put under a spatial reasoning test, gay men tended to do worse than straight men, and lesbians tended to do better than straight women. Gay men are 31% more likely to be left handed than straight men, and lesbians are 91% more likely to be left handed than straight women. The more older brothers a male has, the higher chance that male has of being gay. This is because after giving birth to a male, the mother's body may resist the production of another male baby and can change the sexual orientation of that baby. The way this happens was explained above throughout the chromosome region. In gay men and heterosexual women, the two sides of the brain were about the same size, while in gay women and heterosexual men, the right side of the brain was slightly larger. What does this all suggest? Gay men share traits with straight women, and gay women share traits with straight men. As such, homosexuality cannot be a product of the environment.
When my opponent says that homosexuality is mutable, he implies one of three things: 1. Homosexuality is a choice 2. Homosexuality is a disease. 3. Homosexuality is evolutionarily advantageous.
My opponent clearly states that he is not arguing that homosexuality is a choice, so #1 is out. Homosexuality is definitely not evolutionarily advantageous, as homosexuals can't mate, so #3 is out. What we are left with is #2, which says homosexuality is a disease. Now this may be a little provocative, and I hope not to insult anyone, but this is what I have deduced from my opponent's claim that homosexuality is mutable. This was my thought process:
-Opponent claims homosexuality is mutable, or can be changed
-Other things that are also mutable in terms of humans are choices, diseases (both biological and psychological), and some evolutionary adaptations.
-Opponent clearly states that he is not arguing homosexuality is a choice. Cross choice out
-Homosexuality is not evolutionary advantageous, as homosexuals can't mate. Cross that out
-Disease is left.
-Ergo, the statement "homosexuality is a mutable" implies that homosexuality is a disease.
Now I don't know if Pro meant to imply this, and I'm sorry if he didn't, but homosexuality is clearly not a disease as proven by the above evidence. Gay conversion therapy exists, but these programs have a 3% percent "success" rate, and these success tended to be religiously correlated, whether it be the "cured" converts to a religion that disallow homosexuality or he/she is already involved in a religion that disallows homosexuality.
To extended the diversity argument, over 1500 species have been found to have homosexual tendencies. Now these animals range from dwarf monkeys to lions to bison to geese to penguins and to dolphins. Now all of these animals live in completely different parts of the globe. How would it be possible that homosexual tendencies can be found in 1500 species from all over the globe if environmental factors are responsible for it?
Twin studies can estimate what percent of a trait is genetic through concordance. If one twin has a trait, and the other twin shares this trait, they are considered concordant . If one twin is gay, and the other twin is gay 50% of the time, the concordance rate is 50%, so the trait is estimated to be around 50% genetic. If a trait is 100% genetic, there is a 100% concordance rate.
Twin studies for homosexuality find extremely small genetic influences. Using a massive Australian register with 33,000 participants—or 16,500 twin pairs—finds extremely low concordance rates of 11% for men and 14% for women. So genes likely contribute a low 11-14% portion of homosexuality .
11-14% genetic rates in this field of research are considered weak. To say something is about 10% genetic is not significant at all. To put it into perspective, puberty has been shown to be 90% genetic . To say something is 10% genetic is basically saying genes have almost no effect, and the trait is likely environmentally driven.
Many twin studies have been undertaken in order to find what effect the environment has on homosexuality. They tend to find shared environment—the environment both of the twins experience—has 0 effect. But non-shared environment—such as a different perception to an event, being harmed in other ways (many reasons)—contributed to about 54-84% of homosexuality . the *vast majority* of homosexual orientation is dictated by one’s environment, not biological predisposition.
There is reason to believe those studies overestimate the genetic effects and underestimate the environmental effects. Shared environmental factors—such as having a gay parent—are often considered ‘nonshared’ factors, and are often dubbed down by the authors. When this is accounted for the genetic contribution is about 10% .
If being gay was biologically determined, children of gay parents would not have higher rates of homosexuality. However, children raised by gay parents tend to have much higher rates of homosexuality—indicating environments play a large role in determining homosexual orientation. A massive review recently published amassed a gargantuan amount of literature in order to test whether or not children raised by homosexuals tend to be homosexual. The author concluded—citing 150 studies written by authors who claim there is no difference—finds that there is a difference. Children raised by gay parents tend to be more likely to have nonheterosexual orientations. The study even cites works by authors who have eviscerated the no difference hypothesis. The study argues “children of nonheterosexual parents have been more likely to grow up to engage in same-sex sexual behaviors, or to identify as nonheterosexual, than children raised by heterosexual parents” .
A study published in 1996 which uses a random sample gives us some pretty interesting results. The study found children of homosexuals were much less likely to report exclusive heterosexuality. 47% of children raised by homosexuals said they were not exclusive heterosexuals (in contrast, about 97% of the overall population is exclusively heterosexual), and were more likely to say their first sexual experience was homosexual .
A separate scholar—sociologist Walter Schumm—set out to see whether or not these results could be replicated. Schumm added upon the data set: not only were more anecdotal (book) respondents added, but research from other studies and an anthropological dataset were also added. The results—that children of gay parents were more likely to be gay—“was confirmed” .
Arguably the strongest argument against homosexuality being inborn is the fact homosexual orientation often changes. Traits which change are not genetic, but generally are environmentally determined. Although many homosexuals have actually changed without any therapy at all (it happens over time) , I will focus upon therapy.
Research from as early as 1974 had found reorientation therapy was successful in 40% of cases in reducing unwanted homosexual attraction. A meta-analysis done in 2000 surveyed 30 studies in regards to how often people’s sexual orientation would change if they underwent therapy. A total of 327 subjects were present in the study. Of the sample, 33% reported significant changes in sexuality. A second analysis in 2002 reviewed even more literature than the previous studies. They found 79% who underwent treatment were more heterosexual than those in the control groups who did nothing .
Arguably these other studies all suffered from many methodological flaws. In this field of research, a lot of the research is forced to rely upon small sample sizes as not many people wish to undergo therapy. But in 2001, a large study by Robert Spitzer—a phycologist who was instrumental in getting homosexuality removed from the diagnostic list of mental disorders—seemed to have revered his previous position that homosexuality was immutable. The study had one of the largest sample in this field of research with “200 respondents of both genders (143 males, 57 females)”, and found that many individuals “reported changes from homosexual to heterosexual orientation lasting 5 years or more” . What is interesting is that a large amount of those surveyed—41 percent—had been openly gay prior to conversion therapy. Many charge that those who ‘changed’ didn’t really change, just that they were repressing their feelings. But the fact 41% were comfortable with homosexuality—at least to be open about it—became bisexual or heterosexual really indicates that real change does occur, and that the therapy is often very effective. An exact number of those who became heterosexual is around 64% for men and 44% for women (obtained ‘good heterosexual functioning’).
A similar study published one year later involved a survey of 822 individuals who had obtained reorientation therapy. A law review citing the article noted how the study “Before counseling, 68% of the participants in the survey perceived themselves as exclusively homosexual, and another 22% stated that they were more homosexual than heterosexual. After their treatment or therapy, only 13% perceived themselves as exclusively homosexual, while 34% described themselves as exclusively heterosexual.”
So what environmental factors cause homosexuality?
If my opponent can demonstrate a strong biological cause, this becomes refuted. However, I think it is important to clarify *what* type of factors have the potential to cause homosexuality.
Some of the factors are discussed above. Social setting seems to be an important factor in the development of homosexuality. Being raised by a gay parent seems to be a risk, as well as being sexually assaulted in a homosexual manner . Some societies seem to *promote* homosexuality which leads to increased homosexual orientation . For men, some factors are “urban birthplace and an absent or unknown father”, and for women it is “an urban birthplace, maternal death during adolescence, and mother-absence.” A US study found “degree of urbanization … growing up in a more pro-homosexual region … a woman with a college degree was nine times more likely to identify herself as non-heterosexual … environments that sanction and/or promote homosexuality induce more individuals to engage in homosexual behavior.” Wait, college makes you gay?! Sounds odd, but it isn’t what you think. The reason those who are homosexual are more educated is because many universities actually promote homosexuality.
This theory has been supported by an abundance of evidence. Urbanization and a ‘pro’ gay society are strong factors in homosexuality development. Amongst western countries, the percentage of lesbians, gays, and bisexuals amongst a population varies greatly—indicating social factors help promote homosexuality. Indeed, a genetic trait—like height—has very little variation amongst the western world. Homosexuality, however, varies significantly . The following graphs demonstrate this (height vs male homosexuality):
Evidence which supports the idea that society causes homosexuality is that overtime homosexual experimentation has increased. In the UK it has increased from 1% to 2.8% .
There is a difference between homosexual behavior and homosexual orientation. There are no known animals who have *long term* homosexual relationships. What occurs in animals is not directly applicable to what occurs in humans.
Ram homosexuality supports the idea environmental factors cause homosexuality. Indeed, many argue the hormone differences between gay rams and straight rams prove homosexuality is innate amongst animals, however ram hormone levels change in response to environmental experiences. The environment (e.g. sex deprivation) seems to drive ram homosexuality .
6. Walter Schumm. “Intergenerational of Parental Sexual Orientation and Other Myths,” International Journal of the Jurisprudence of the Family 4 (2013): 267-433.
7. Paul Cameron and Kirk Cameron. “Homosexual Parents,” Adolescence 124 (1996): 757-776.
8. Paul Cameron and Kirk Cameron. “Children of Homosexual Parents Report Childhood Difficulties,” Psychological Reports 90 (2002): 71-82.
My opponent claims that because identical twins share the same DNA, they should both have the same sex orientation, but they don't. Therefore, he claims, it must be environmental. This has a number of problems to it. First, making a point against the notion: "Homosexuals are born that way" does not automatically prove your argument. For example, I could say "Because identical twins don't have the same sexuality, it can't be genes, it must be flying dinosaurs.", and it would still follow the same logic you have used. Second, people who have gay siblings are more likely to volunteer for these types of scientific studies, which can cause the results to become skewed.
I agree, sexual orientation is not entirely due to DNA. That does not mean, however, that it is automatically environmental. Hormones play a major part in determining gender as well as sexual orientation, namely, the hormones the baby is exposed to in the womb. When in the womb, all babies are female, and in order to become male require hormones, namely testosterone. It is entirely possible that in the case of twins, one twin is exposed to less testosterone than the other. This is how you get fraternal twins. If for whatever reason one
baby was exposed to less testosterone than the other but both came out as male, the one who received less testosterone is more likely to be gay. The flip side applies for girls.
My opponent claims through this study that gay parents are more likely to have homosexual kids than straight parents do, and therefore the gay parents must somehow influencing their kid to also become gay. There are also a number or issues with this conclusion. First, again, gay people are more likely to volunteer for/agree to these kinds of studies, again making the test pool skewed. Second, it is also entirely possible that the child is biologically related to one of the parents, and that "homosexual gene" (to kind of over-simplify it) may have been passed down to the child.
The way reorientation therapy works is that they give the "patient" a positive stimulus when they have lustful thoughts for the opposite sex and negative stimulus for when they have lustful thoughts for the same sex. They also may fill them up with estrogen/testosterone in an attempt to make them find the opposite sex more attractive. However, it has been shown time and time again that this does not work. The first and main reason is that homosexuality is not psychosis. Again, if my opponent is saying that homosexuality is mutable, he is also implying that it is some sort of disease. Homosexuality is NOT a disease, if it was a disease, psychologists or doctors would be easily be able to discern them from straight people. But they can't, as seen in a study of I can't recall the name but it was mentioned in a This American Life's episode 81 words. I will however, provide a similar study below.
A recent APA task force did a study on this and found in their 2009 report that the participants in their study went through gay conversion therapy and came out negligibly more attracted to the opposite sex and remained just as attracted to the same sex. On the other hand, what did change was the patients state of mental health, as the side effects of such therapy's were loss of sexual feeling, depression, suicidality and anxiety.
A lot of these studies that my opponent mentioned have a number of issues. From 1960 to 2007 only 83 studies confirm my opponents case, of which most had biases such as a court ordering that compelled them to take the therapy or a very small, low budget test pool.
Also, a lot of footnotes here, did you just copy and paste this stuff? Because if you did, please stop, I will not debate with a website.
"There is a difference between homosexual behavior and homosexual orientation. There are no known animals who have *long term* homosexual relationships. What occurs in animals is not directly applicable to what occurs in humans."
This statement has a number of issues. First, there are known animals who have long term homosexual relationships, a lot actually, namely geese and duck (who mate for life), dwarf chimpanzees (all of which, that's right, all, are bisexual), swans (also mate for life), domestic cats (mate for life), and lions (mate for life), to name a few. Second, my opponent forgets that humans are also animals. What applies to animals may also apply to humans, we are not suddenly above anything animal relate just because we are humans. This is why we do drug tests on mice; they 80% related to humans.
I forgot to put sources last time, I put them here this time. Sorry!
I thank my opponent’s response.
“Also, a lot of footnotes here, did you just copy and paste this stuff?”
No I did not.
My opponent’s first criticism is that twin studies recruit biased samples, but he obviously is unaware of the methodologies used. The low (11%) concordance rates have been derived from large twin registers (random) or large randomized surveys. Thus, the low number of genetic influence is derived from methodologically sound datasets which are representative of the population . Further, his argument states twins with high concordance rates (one twin is gay gets his other gay twin to join) actually helps my case. If this was true, then these studies would overestimate genetics, not underestimate it. Thus, assuming his criticism is correct, then he proves homosexuality is *less* than 11% genetic.
His argument in relation to hormones is incorrect. Fraternal twins are formed due to different hormones—but not for the reason you think. They are that way because they have separate placentas which provides them with different hormones. What also must be noted is fraternal twins are also different genetically. They are more like a normal brother and sister than twins (separate placenta, separate sperm, separate egg) .
The exact effect my opponent claims will prove his point (hormones/placenta effect) has actually been researched in this field. It actually suggests twin studies overestimate the genetic effects. When this is accounted for, genetic influence falls about 15%. So using the low concordance rate studies, the genetic influence is zero. Using studies with higher concordance, male homosexuality is only 7% genetic (personal calculation; official estimate 18%) and 22% for women (obtained same results) . Thus, homosexuality when hormones are accounted for means the genetic influence is weak.
My opponent essentially loses the debate with his analogy. I said I would argue environmental factors cause it—however, I only have to prove it is not inborn. So, even if we assume a ‘dinosaur’ caused it, I would win the debate. It also must be noted the studies I cited often could isolate the environmental variables—they find they cause over half (54-84% of homosexuality. Thus, these studies, again, control for my opponent’s criticism. I even mentioned that last round. Thus, this analogy is preempted.
Both of my opponent’s arguments are either (1) incorrect or (2) actually support my case and have been considered by the studies cited.
My opponent must have skimmed what I wrote. He again levels the argument the studies rely upon weak non-random datasets, but ignores the study last round (Cameron and Cameron 1996) which used a random dataset—this means any biases my opponent claims are incorrect. Further, I assume my opponent obtains his criticism from this FRC link , which he cites and makes the same claim. The link cites the Regnerus study. What is also interesting is that the link notes “If they are female, have had more sexual partners--both male and female” [emphasis added]. Thus the source he cites actually supports my position—studies using random samples find gay parents are more likely to raise gay children. Again, my opponent makes an argument which benefits me and is incorrect based upon the data cited.
My opponent claims it is possible gay parents may be related to their children—thus they could have passed a gay gene. This is an interesting argument. However, it is unlikely. For example, gay men generally are unrelated to the child they obtain. The Regnerus study noted how many children of gay families come from dissolved heterosexual unions. However, men usually lose custody battles . Thus, as the studies (e.g. Cameron and Cameron) use mainly male samples, the possible genetic effect my opponent suggests is negligible.
Further, children share about 50% of their genes with each parent. Which means if it was a genetic trait, we would see the inheritance rate of lesbian mothers to be about 50%. However, it is usually under that (20-40%). Thus, we can assume the higher rates of non-heterosexuality are due to other factors.
My opponent’s main argument is twofold:
The APA dislikes it
The studies are flawed
His second point—the studies are flawed—have essentially been preempted. The studies I cited often had large (200+) sample sizes and found heterosexual functioning increased after therapy. The fact the best studies find the benefit from these practices suggest I am correct. Arguably the best research came out in 2011. Previous studies were not longitudinal—in other words, they did not track their patients over time. In fact, the main criticism of the APA was that studies which claimed change occurred was they did not follow their patients over time. The study—which followed their patients over 7 years—found change was in fact possible. To quote the study, therapy allowed homosexuals to experience “significant change away from homosexual orientation.” 
Pro claims if it was not a disease doctors would be able to distinguish them. But this is an odd argument. Until properly diagnosed, someone with cancer may look exactly like you and me. A doctor can easily diagnose homosexuality by asking. So just because they look the same does not mean anything. And saying I must call it a disease is just an emotional ploy. I am not willing to make the scientific statement definitively that it is a disease—I am only willing to say therapy works. Readers can interpret those results however they like. But this debate is not that homosexuality is a disorder, but whether or not they are born that way. If it is mutable via therapy, we can assume they are not born that way. Whether or not we choose to call it a disease is irrelevant.
Now it must be noted the APA task force did no research on its own—it merely reviewed the evidence. Although the APA claims the research is flawed, this is likely not true as I have cited significant work  which has noted the use of strong methodology obtains the same result. IT must be noted the study was presented to the APA after their most recent report, so it could not have been included in their results. Further, the APA did not apply its standards for the research consistently. Often, they would cite studies claiming therapy works and call it strong evidence that therapy is ineffective. However, studies claiming it worked using similar methodology would be called flawed. This means the APA report had some sort of bias in which it would exclude studies finding a positive effect and would accept studies claiming a negative effect, regardless of their methodological strengths . The APA report also excluded 5 highly qualified experts from authoring the report, and instead chose authors with strong liberal biases. Often, these authors write for pro-gay journals, or are even gay themselves . Thus, the APA report is flawed as it does not include the newest research proving change and excludes many valid studies which undermine its conclusions for no apparent reason. The study also prevented many honest scholars from authoring the report and instead opted for people personally involved in the issue—never the way to go if your goal is nonpartisanship.
Thus, the point that reorientation therapy works has been upheld.
The claim animals—like geese and ducks—are applicable to humans is faulty. It also must be noted he ignored the example of the goat, which proves homosexuality is genetic. The strongest piece of evidence my opponent provides is that bonobos are bisexual. However, the homosexual behavior of the booboos has been found to not be due to homosexual orientation, but other reasons. The reason bonobos have gay sex is to avoid conflict. In fact, many pro-gay researchers have come to the conclusion that animals really aren’t gay, but engage in homosexual behavior due to different environmental settings, not genes .
My opponent claims we are 80% related to mice—this is correct. But this does not mean our sexualities will be the same. Most monkeys share over 90% of their genes with us, but how we engage in sexual behavior is different. Many monkeys are polyamorous, whereas others are monogamous. Humans, based on our characteristics, seem to be neither (a mix of both) . So even though we are closely related, sexuality seems to differ significantly species to species.
I have proven (1) Twin studies show homosexuality is mostly environmental, (2) gay parents produce an environment causing homosexuality, (3) reorientation therapy works based upon the balance of evidence, and (4) animals are likely not a good example if you want to prove being gay is innate. My opponent has one round to refute all of these. It also must be noted he hardly makes a positive case. Unless he can identify studies proving a gay gene, prenatal hormonal influence, or epigenetics as a cause he loses the debate.
I will begin by rebutting my opponent's arguments and then re-emphasize my original points, very little of which my opponent has addressed.
I must clarify that identical twins are not complete clones of each other. True, they are both very similar and share a significant amount of DNA, but it must be understood that identical twins are NOT exactly the same. A study carried out in November 2012 found from 92 pairs of fetuses that identical twins have around 360 genetic differences very early in the fetus stage. This is because despite the womb's small space, the two fetuses are still exposed to different parts of the environment in the womb, creating variations. These variations include an additional X chromosome mutation in one fetus but not the other and different phenotypes (this one always occurs)
I would also like to point out that in my opponent's previous argument, he states: "If one twin is gay, and the other twin is gay 50% of the time, the concordance rate is 50%, so the trait is estimated to be around 50% genetic." 50% is actually very high; fraternal twins have around 22% chance of sharing sexuality, and humans in general have around a 10% chance of being a homosexual. This essentially shows that since identical twins share homosexuality five times more than an average non-twin person does, it at the very least shows that genetics play a significant role in terms of sexual orientation.
Again, my opponent makes a pseudo "God of the gaps" argument where he assumes by attacking genetics it automatically proves that homosexuality is caused by environmental factors. However, I must point out that attacking anything, whether it be genetics or hormones or something else, does not automatically substantiate your case, as science, or in this case, the science of homosexuality, is not an "if then else" statement. I do not think that homosexuality is 100% genetics, what I do believe is that homosexuality is caused by a mixture of genes and hormones. This I will elaborate on later.
In my previous argument, I failed to put in several important points related to statistics. Not to worry though, I will put them here. Homosexual people make up about 10% of the global human population. As such, homosexual couples, especially homosexual couples who have kids, are not especially easy to find. In the Cameron and Cameron study, only 17 of the 5182 randomly chosen adults wrote out in the questionnaire that they had homosexual parents. This causes a very common statistical bias, which I will explain this way. Say for example you had 2 groups, group A and group B. Group A has 100 people while group B has 10. Now lets say 9 people from each group had a pet cat. The 9 people in group A only make up for 9% of the entire group, so only 9% of group A has a cat. However, 9 people in group B makes up for 90% of the entire group, so 90% of the people in group B has a cat. So essentially with the logic used by my opponent and the scientists he cited, people in group B have a higher chance of having a cat than the people in group A. This makes absolutely no sense, as both groups have the same amount of people who own a cat, it's the amount of people in each group that is different. This is the same for random sample surveys such as Cameron and Cameron. And then you have the issue of whether or not a person is willing to admit that he/she was raised by homosexuals. There are a number of areas of doubt in these types of surveys for this reason, and I highly question the credibility of them.
In my opponent's second paragraph in this line of argumentation, he/she only uses child custody cases and fails to consider sperm donation or child with a previous lover(not husband/wife).
My opponent's third paragraph states that since children receive 50% of genes from each parent, homosexual parents should have a 50% chance of having a homosexual child. By this logic, heterosexual parents should have a 100% chance of having a heterosexual child (both parents are heterosexual). This is obviously not the case.
"My opponent’s main argument is twofold: The APA dislikes it; The studies are flawed"
I don't know from where you interpreted this from, this is not what I meant, and I must ask you to avoid trivializing my arguments based on your own whims.
Therapy: treatment intended to relieve or heal a disorder.
My opponent continues to insist that homosexuality can be remedied through therapy. Above is the definition of therapy. My opponent does not wish to classify homosexuality as a disease and dismisses it as an appeal to emotion, but this is simply a logical deduction, a simple one at that. Homosexuality cannot be a physical disease, as no bacteria, virus, fungus, or other outside pathogens are involved, nor is auto-immune response to blame. Thus, it should be a psychological disease, but psychologists should be able to distinguish between homosexuals and heterosexuals if it was, which they can't, as proved by two of the links I provided before. Therapy implies that there is something wrong with the person, and if my opponent wants to insist that reorientation therapy works then he must admit that homosexuals have something wrong with them, otherwise, he will be self-refuting.
There is also no reliable evidence that suggests that such therapy actually works. In 2006 the Catholic Medical Association sourced a 1979 study which found that 70% of homosexuals were converted by therapy by William Masters and Virginia Johnson, a husband and wife team, to prove that reorientation therapy works. The credibility of this husband and wife team, however, leaves much to be desired. Masters refused to provide the evidence used to draw this conclusion when the clinic's top physician asked for tape recordings of these cases. Johnson was a self taught therapist who didn't have a college degree and mostly relied on her husband for his medical expertise. Johnson, decades later, stated that her husband might have been "a little creative" with the results at worst, or he didn't know what he was talking about at best.
In my opponent's paragraph that attempts to discredit the APA's study, he/she uses a number of logical fallacies, including the assumption that "strong methodology" = "correct" and "APA uses people that support conclusion" = "bias". This is the same as saying "There was strong methodology used to determine the Earth was flat, but in came the scientific community who determined the methodologies used to prove that the Earth was flat were flawed, and they only allowed round-earth scientists to publish results, so that must equal bias." Sometimes when organizations such as the APA say something is flawed because it is flawed, not because of bias.
The source used to substantiate this article is dripping with arrogance. It essentially says that "Humans are rational and moral creatures, animals are not, therefore animals have zero relation to humans." Not only is this logically fallacious, it is also completely and utterly wrong. To prove why this statement makes no sense, take for example a peaceful person and a serial killer. Just because one person has violent tendencies doesn't change the fact that both of them are human. Moreover, we are more similar to animals than a lot of us like to admit. We all have some form of communication. Primates are all very social animals, like us. Some primates such as chimpanzees and bonobos engage in mouth to mouth contact and oral sex. The red howler monkey screams to warn ALL animals in the vicinity that a predator is coming. Eagles are always willing to protect their chicks with their life, which is more than we can say for ourselves. Moles have a very complicated and intricate tunnel system that can be compared to our sewage and roadway systems. My point is, we are close to animals than we think, and this baseline must be established.
I did not list out a lot of the animals that display homosexual tendencies, but it seems the situation requires me to. Bottolenose dolphins display distinctly homosexual behavior, with male dolphin anally penetrating other male dolphins and female dolphins nuzzling another female's vaginal area with its nose. Elephants engage in very affectionate behavior and mounting with other elephants of the same gender, and these relationships are very long term. Homosexual behavior in male giraffes was found to be more common than heterosexual behavior. The list goes on, I still have to summarize my points.
As said before, gay people come in all shapes and sizes, from fat gays to skinny gays, from rich gays to poor gays, from white gays to black gays, from Christian gays to Muslims gays. If homosexuality was really environmental, all of these people should come from similar backgrounds or share similar environmental experiences. However, they obviously don't. The son of a doctor is just as likely to be gay as a son of a drug lord. The daughter of a celebrity is just as likely to be gay as the daughter of a homeless woman. But there are genetic similarities: all gay men share the same genetic signatures on part of the x-chromosome XQ28. Homosexual women are more similar to heterosexual men than they are to heterosexual woman, and the reverse is true for homosexual men. This is found in right brain size. left handedness, spatial judgement, etc. If homosexuality was really mostly environmental, then why are there so many innate anatomical traits associated with homosexuality?
My opponent claims twins are not identical. Although this is true, it is incorrect to simply wave away the entire argument. Separated twin studies and traditional twin studies often have the same results, suggesting twins are genetically similar enough in order to garner significant results . Twin studies have also found genetic effects/environmental effects (which are well accepted) in the medical field, such as dyslexia and arthritis. They also have found height, eye color, autism, etc.  So this cannot simply be waived because a few differences can be found.
I must also note 50% genetic is considered a ‘moderate’ effect. Again, to put it into perspective, the concordance rates for heterosexuality are 98%. Now if we assume twins have a 22% chance of a concordance rate, which means homosexuality is 22% genetic. This is a weak effect. And it fails to take into account the placenta effect which I described last round, which reduces the genetic effect by 15%. So the actual effect is 7%--or, in other words, very little genetic component. And my opponent does not understand what concordance is. Concordance is only how often if one twin is gay the other one is gay—not how common homosexuality is. Regardless, the 10% number is total baloney—surveys pin the number at around 3.4% . That number is based upon small non-random surveys in the 40s. Twins are likely gay at about the same rate (out of 100 twins 3 will be gay). If concordance rate is 10%, chances are in a sample of 100 none of the other children will be gay (only 3 out of all of them, 0 concordance). Also note I never said the concordance rate was 50%, I merely gave an example. I pinned the number down at about 11%, a minimal effect.
10% of the population is not homosexual. My opponent is relying upon extremely weak data in the 40s and acting like it has not been refuted. The best surveys find the prevalence of homosexuality to be at 1-3.4%, not 10%. Now his criticism of the study is valid, but he drops so much evidence. He drops at least 10 studies summarized by Schumm, some using large random sample sizes, other using small sample sizes, all finding children of gay parents are more likely to be gay. Now to say people will not say they were raised by gay parents on a survey has no warrant—it is merely a hypothetical. My opponent throughout the debate relies on hypotheticals, whereas I am relying on hard data. So he would have to prove why, on an anonymous survey, to researchers they don’t know, why they would lie. And, again, it ignores the fact I cited a wealth of other research which he conveniently chooses to ignore.
Due to the fact no data that I know of tells us how often IVF occurs, we cannot assume gay people usually do this. A hypothetical with no proof.
I made a simple comparison. Assuming homosexuality was 100% inborn, this would be the case. But it isn’t. And, as environmental factors determine homosexuality, we could not assume 100% of those raised by straight people would be straight. The fact—from dozens of studies—that gay parents are likely to raise gay children has not been refuted. One study has been responded to. To reiterate, a large study by Schumm expanding the Cameron dataset, the Morrison dataset, obtaining more anecdotal cases (separate dataset), and an anthropological dataset all found the same conclusion: being gay varied significantly based upon your parental environment, and varied significantly culture to culture .
My opponent says he didn’t say this. Ok. Prove that you didn’t. Your entire argument was based upon critiques of a few studies and citing an APA report. Pretty sure my summary of your argument is valid.
My opponent relies upon semantics. Who cares if it is a disease. We are not debating ‘homosexuality is a mental disorder’. We are debating ‘Are homosexuals born that way’. So the only thing about the research I noted is simple: homosexuality is fluid, mutable, and changes. Genetic/hormonal behaviors do not change, therefore homosexuality is not inborn. Whether or not it is a disease or even should be treated is irrelevant. The fact is therapy causes them to change. Stop playing semantics on the word therapy. Further, R1 states “No trolling, semantics, stuff like that.” Thus, my opponent actually breaks a rule and concedes.
Now my opponent says there is no evidence. He ignores everything I said. Who cares about the Catholic Medical association—I didn’t cite them. The 1979 study? I didn’t cite it, I cited 1970s meta-analysis in conjunction with newer ones (to prove the state of the science is unchanged). So again, this is irrelevant.
It must be noted what my opponent said is not a ‘logical’ fallacy. He is saying I am using faulty logic, but that isn’t a fallacy. But I digress, let’s look at his criticism. He essentially admits my studies have strong methodologies, but refuses to accept them as correct. It must be noted there was actually no methodology proving the earth was flat. Strong methodologies and observations, however, prove it is round (and proved it was round in the past) . Most others thought it was flat due to religion or based their observations around a flat earth, assuming a round earth was impossible. My opponent really fails to refute my point as the flat earth analogy does not apply well. As he provides no strong counter evidence—and no new arguments can be brought forth last round (usually)—he essentially concedes I provide strong evidence and instead relies upon a fallacy. Which one? The fallacy of false analogy. So, ironically, it is my opponent, not me, relying upon fallacious argumentation.
My opponent argues first with my source—not with what I said. Thus, it is a red herring. And my opponent notes a lot of similarities. Cool. But I cited monkeys—closest living relatives—and show how their sexuality varies greatly from ours in other respects . Due to the fact sexuality—something we are debating here—greatly differs tells us a lot. Indeed, there is evidence to suggest heterosexuality as well may not even be inborn . Thus, as animals have differing environments in regards to heterosexuality and homosexuality, the fact gay animals exist is not something which harms my case.
I must also point out my opponent ignores the evidence showing animals—like rams—are gay through environmental changes . Thus, there is no reason to believe other animals who engage in homosexuality are not homosexual due to environmental forcings. This is something my opponent has ignored. So even assuming all of these animals are really ‘gay’, it does not mean they are born that way.
Indeed, Penguins often have long gay relationships—like elephants. However, a Penguin relationship (which was gay) lasted 6 years. It was trumpeted how being gay is natural. But they broke up—and one of the penguins is heterosexual . Homosexuality—even in the animal kingdom—seems to be fluid, in other words, not inborn.
I will say my opponent’s arguments in relation to monkey’s is interesting. But engaging in oral sex is not a strong relationship, really. They have mouths like ours and all animals like sexual pleasure. The fact they figured out putting their mouth down there and it feels good does not mean they are genetically similar. In fact, that is an environmental factor! Dolphins having sex may also be a non-genetic thing. Indeed, although many claim dolphins are bisexual and often exclusive heterosexuality, there is no proof of this. Claims of dolphin homosexuality stem from misrepresentation of a study, which said the word ‘bisexual’, but the way it was used only meant male and female dolphins (bisexual) continue to live near their birthplace . Thus, the ‘gay dolphin’ argument is not really true and is often misinterpreted behavior.
Essentially, animals have sex in a similar way rapists do. Often to display power. Or to avoid conflict, or for other, non ‘gay’ reasons . So the fact homosexual behavior exists is not a strong argument suggesting animals are born gay, but that they engage in homosexual behavior. Even in animals with long term relationships, one or both of the partners seem to break apart and become either asexual or heterosexual. Even in the animal kingdom, as sexuality is fluid, not inborn.
My opponent’s points were refuted in R1 (e.g. what environmental factors cause homosexuality). To say being gay only exists in the same environment is to not understand how sexuality develops. Merely because something may increase the chance of homosexuality occurring does not mean it will always cause it to occur. I noted in R1 there are dozens of possible environmental factors—some of which likely exist in every society. Areas with more of these factors (e.g. urban areas) were more likely to produce homosexuals. If it was inborn, this would not occur. I also noted how the level of homosexuality in different societies varies greatly, indicating environmental factors do play a role. My opponent’s case was already refuted.
The XQ28 is essentially refuted under twin studies. If little genetic effect is detected, that gene cannot play a large role in the development of homosexuality. So any ‘look at this gene!’ studies are refuted under twin studies. It must be noted my opponent has not offered one study under twin studies proving his point—and if he does, he breaks a rule accepted on the website (no new arguments last round).
The brain studies are bunk. They compare gay people with AIDS to straight people. AIDS actually changes the hypothalamus region which is supposedly changed due to homosexuality. Further, as the brain changes with use and environmental factors , it does not prove being gay is inborn. Only 3% of left handed people are gay (compared to 2% of the total population—or even 3% in the survey cited earlier) suggests the effect is only 0-1% . The relationship has almost no effect.
As per the rules, I will not argue this round. Vote Con!